Kate Garraway overwhelmed by response to coronavirus blood plasma donation plea

Kate Garraway returns to the Smooth Radio studio in London to present her first national show since her time in the jungle on I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here!.
Kate Garraway admitted feeling emotional at the boost to blood plasma donation to help COVID-19 patients. (PA)

Kate Garraway has admitted feeling “emotional” at the response to her plea for donors of blood plasma to come forward to help coronavirus patients.

The Good Morning Britain host was commended by consultant haematologist Professor Mike Murphy for helping to promote a scheme in which those recovering from COVID-19 donate their plasma, containing antibodies, in order to help others suffering from the virus.

Garraway, whose husband Derek Draper is in a coma after battling coronavirus, said: "I feel quite emotional about this, not just the idea that people have come forward but it might save lives."

Read more: Kate Garraway feels bad for 'having fun' on GMB while husband in hospital

The 53-year-old mother-of-two also said: "Last week it was something that came to light as a useful tool, I was asking if I could do it back in April for Derek.

"Then it was pre the first trials for Covid so I wasn't allowed to, because they didn't know how safe it was for Derek or anybody else involved."

She added: “I need to get on and donate myself.”

Garraway and co-host Adil Ray, 46, were joined via video link by Professor Murphy, comedian Hal Cruttenden - who has recovered from coronavirus and donated plasma - and Ann Kitchen, the first patient to receive blood plasma treatment, which she described as “liquid gold”.

Mock The Week star Cruttenden, 50, said: “It is always lovely to save a life doing something that's really very easy. We all feel so powerless at the moment and just to be able to do something does cheer you up.”

Garraway’s 52-year-old husband Draper remains in a coma after almost dying from COVID-19.

Updating Ray on his condition she said: “I’m hoping to see him this week. It was a stable day yesterday. I’m learning that stable is sometimes good. What we want is up days but a non-down day is something to celebrate as well.

Read more: Kate Garraway wanted to donate plasma to help husband

“It doesn’t necessarily get easier. But good to know that things are moving forward, trials are being done, and other lives are being saved.”

Kate Garraway, alongside her husband Derek Draper and two children Darcey, 13, and Bill, 10, arrives back at Heathrow Airport after the 2019 series of I'm A Celebrity ... Get Me Out Of Here! (Photo by Steve Parsons/PA Images via Getty Images)
Kate Garraway with husband Derek Draper and their two children Darcey and Billy. (Getty Images)

A spokesperson from NHS Blood and Transplant said: "The number of people who have recovered from coronavirus offering to donate plasma was 293% the normal last Monday after Kate spoke about her own desire to donate, following her husband's illness.

"We're really grateful to Kate and Good Morning Britain for covering donation again today because we urgently people to donate now, to help during any second wave.

"If you've had coronavirus, you could saves lives by donating plasma. You could give the NHS the first treatment which actually attacks the virus. Register to donate at www.nhsbt.nhs.uk."